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Sword: HEN.M.213-1933

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Object information

Awaiting location update


Blade maker: Unknown (Blade)
Hilt maker: Unknown (Hilt)




Sword (Reitschwert). Very large hilt, but with a rather small ovoid pommel with an insignificant button; long grip bound with steel wire, with a twist of thicker twisted wire. Turks' heads at top and bottom (this is probably the original binding). Knuckle-guard of flat ribbon section, ending in a flat disc against a pommel. A loop-guard springs from the midpoint of the knuckle-guard to cross the back of the hand and end at the rear of the base of the rear branch. Branches of the same section as the other guards. This loop-guard has incorporated at its midpoint, directly along the ecusson, a flat disc to match the others. A small ring-guard joins the lower ends of the two handles; this also has a disc at its midpoint. Very long wide-spreading quillons horizontally recurved, also of flat ribbon section, widening toward its tips which are twisted with disc terminals. Back-guards of three elements.
The hilt is of bright steel, decorated with applied silver classical heads in profile upon the disca with a large fleur-de-lis on each face of the strongly cusped ecusson, which has a squared ridge along each edge.
Long, flat blade, broad and slightly tapering with a strong ricasso with flat faces. There is a wide shallow fuller at the forte of the blade, below the ricasso. The ricasso is contained within the arms of the hilt, but there is a short secondary ricasso below this. The blade is earlier than the hilt, and would to be from a bastard sword of the mid-sixteenth century, which has been adapted and remounted in a seventeenth century hilt. In the fuller the words TOLEDO, CARLOS LEI VUN are engraved in large Roman capitals (Charles I of Spain, the Emperor Charles V).
Norman, type 53. Pommel, type 18.


History note: Unknown before testator, 'Abbotsford', Downs Road, St Helen's Park, Hastings, Sussex,

Legal notes

J.S. Henderson Bequest

Measurements and weight

Length: 124.0 cm

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1933-03-16) by Henderson, James Stewart


16th Century
17th Century, Early#
Circa 1530 CE - 1550 CE Circa 1620 CE -

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Grip composed of wire ( steel)
Inlay composed of silver
Sword composed of steel
Blade Length 105.3 cm Width 4.4 cm
Hilt Length 23.0 cm
Quillons Width 29.8 cm

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: large Roman capitals

  • Location: In fuller
  • Method of creation: Engraved

Identification numbers

Accession number: HEN.M.213-1933
Primary reference Number: 18930
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Friday 20 April 2012 Last processed: Thursday 3 August 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Sword" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-11-28 20:04:48

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